Actor Matthew Broderick's father, actor James Broderick died around the time that this film was being developed, made and released. Broderick's co-actor in this film, Jason Robards, knew his father and helped Matthew through his loss and grief.
Some movie posters for this film featured a long preamble that read: "It's time to feel good again. Prices are double. Your love life's in trouble. The car won't start. Your boss has no heart. The door squeaks. The roof leaks. Your stereo just went mono. All you need is a little Max Dugan."
Actor Matthew Broderick was cast in two Neil Simon works at the same time, this film and the play of Brighton Beach Memoirs (1986) on Broadway. Broderick would also later star in Simon's Biloxi Blues (1988), his only other Simon film to date (December, 2012).
The movie is unique in the Marsha Mason - Neil Simon collaborative canon in that Mason, in a lead starring role in a Simon film, sports light brown/ash blonde hair whereas in all the other films Mason starred in and written by her then husband Simon Mason had always been a dark brunette. Mason did however have full blonde hair in a supporting ensemble part in Simon's The Cheap Detective (1978).
At the time of production, actress Marsha Mason was married to Neil Simon, the film's producer, screenwriter, and source playwright. Of the movies they made together, this film and Only When I Laugh (1981) were the only ones where Simon was also a producer.